On July 27, 2021, Dolphins cornerback Xavien Howard demanded a trade from the organization via his Instagram account. He said with his new agent; they had been behind the scenes negotiating with the front office on a new deal that included incentives. After signing a new deal two years ago, he felt he had vastly outplayed that contract and was owed more money. He also admitted that he didn’t understand what he was signing two years ago.

Now, I could go off on a rant about how the Dolphins are not a playoff contender team, and they never will be with players like this on their team, but I am not. I have instead come to one inevitable conclusion….it is impossible to be a general manager in today’s NFL.

With all the entitlement attitudes, the players who want to be on Super Bowl contending teams only and thoses who like Howard want more money. Or maybe you got a player who feels like he should have a say in management decisions.  It’s no wonder why the Dolphins have been chasing a playoff win in over 20 years.

To Howard’s credit, though, I will acknowledge that at least he backs it up. The 2021 season opener was far from a pretty victory, but it wouldn’t have been one without Howard.

Dolphins were leading the Patriots with 3:18 to go in the game by a point. However, the Patriots were down to the Dolphins’ 11-yard line, and everything seemed to be going their way. Howard jars the ball loose from Patriots starting RB Damien Harris, who in fact was having a great game, by the way, and Howard recovers the ball, which enabled the Dolphins to run the clock out and seal the victory.

Need more proof of how fortunate the Dolphins were this game? Here it is:

Dolphins.            Patriots

First Downs: 16.                   24

Total Plays: 52.                      70

Total Yards: 259.                    393

Yards per play: 5.0.                5.6

Passing: 185.                           268

Time of Possession 23:17.      36:43

As you can see, the Patriots were clearly dominating this game, and if it hadn’t been for that game-changing play by Howard, circumstances would have been different. Love him or hate him, Howard has once again proven that the Dolphins can’t afford to lose him.